It's rapidly moving in to that sad time of year when the spinning wheel starts to get a little dusty. I haven't quite managed to fold it up and put it away in the Stash n' Gear Room yet, but the brake band and the drive band are both off, and it's looking a bit neglected. Which is unfortunate, because I received 12 oz of Hello Yarn goodies in two different colorways this week, and I'm itching to spin them up. However, it is That Season, and so the spinning is taking a back seat.
In order to try and make it up to you, I present instead, not one but two FOs in my favorite color. One is a start on the gift list, the other is for me. So here goes...
Pattern: Jack in the Box Mittens by Robin Melanson, from Knitting New Mittens and Gloves
Yarn: Brown Sheep Nature Spun Worsted (100% wool, 245 yds/100g), left over from a sweater knit for my MIL long ago, color Touche Teal (icky name), and I used less then one skein.
Needles: US 6/4.0 mm for cuff, and US 7/4.5 mm for rest
Gauge: 5.5 stitches/8 rows per inch.
Start/finish: 4 Oct-8 Oct 2009. Really they were finished today when I sewed on the buttons. But so quick!
Comments/mods: I made the "mens" size, and the finished measurements are 10.5 inches long (from edge of cuff) and 8 inches around. They are roomy on my hands and about an inch too long for me. Which is ok, they aren't for me. The pattern was well written, quick to knit and fun. All good there.
I can't believe it's taken me so long to jump on the mitten bandwagon. They are great projects! And, given that you can knit them in something other then fingering weight, they're a lot faster then socks...
FO #2 (for, ehem, me):
Pattern: Indigo Playmate by Wendy Bernard, from Custom Knits
Yarn: Green Mountain Spinnery Mountain Mohair (70% wool/30% mohair, 140 yds/2 oz), colorway Glacier Lake. I had 11 skeins of this originally, but I ended up with about 9 skeins worth (weight-wise) in this sweater.
Needles: US 7/4.5 mm
Gauge: 4.5 stitches/6.5 rows per inch after blocking.
Start/finish: 3 Sept-8 Oct 2009 (knitting was actually finished about a week earlier, but I have a blocking block).
Comments/mods: I repurposed this yarn from a Moriah's Wildflower Cardigan that I knit PR (pre-Ravelry), and then didn't wear much in Texas. I subsequently discovered that someone had chewed a wee hole in the bottom of it, and decided to rip it out and reuse the yarn in something else.
The yoke and body knit up really quickly. I found that I liked the way this yarn knit up on 4.5 mm needles much better then the US 9/5.5 mm needles I had used for the cardigan; the fabric is thick and cushy and snuggly, but still fluid, while the previous incarnation felt a bit too loosely knit.
I did modify a few things. The collar was supposed to be three inches wide at the bottom edge (so not including the short rows for the shawl collar), but I was wary of yardage, and only knit it two inches wide. Still works fine, but the shawl collar isn't quite as dramatic. I think I like it better this way - this is my first shawl collar, and I was a bit dubious about the full sweep shown in the book. But I like how it looks on (pardon the crappy modeled shot but my photographer is busy eating gelato and looking at rocks in Pisa, so this was the best I could do) (PS - Honey? I'm gonna be so glad when you get home. Be warned that I'm dumping the kids on you and vanishing out the door ASAP).
The other modification I made was to knit the belt and then decide I like it better without. I'm a bit...thick around the middle, and as knit, the belt made this ride up a bit too much and get too short. So I've decided to leave it open. If it needs to be closed, there's always a trusty shawl pin around that would work.
I do love this yarn though. It's got great depth of color, and just feels so nice and soft. I guess it wouldn't be that great if you have an issue with mohair, but I love it. I wish it weren't quite so pricey, but there you have it. Gorgeous stuff.